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The Wall Street Journal: Deutsche Bank agrees to informal merger talks with Commerzbank

Deutsche Bank AG’s DB, -0.23% top executives have agreed to hold discussions with rival Commerzbank AG CRZBY, -0.79% about a potential merger, as Germany’s two biggest banks explore strategic options after suffering prolonged performance and share-price declines, people close to the banks said.

The informal talks reflect a deepening willingness by Deutsche Bank’s management board to engage in a possible tie-up, though executives this week continued to see a potential merger as one option, some of the people said.

Heightened pressure on the banks from German government officials to address their lagging performance, and consider in more detail how a merger might take shape, also factored into recent discussions, the people said.

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